It is a new year!
A new year can quite literally feel like a new school year after returning from a long winter break. Your break may have offered more snacks, bending the rules, later nights, sleeping in, and more–opposite of our established school habits. When the break is over and it’s time to get back into the swing of school, resetting school habits can prove beneficial.
Here are some tips to reset those habits:
1. Revisit already-established habits. Get back into “school mode” during the final days of the holiday break. Pretend it’s a school day and practice your daily routine. During what would be the school hours, do fun activities together as a family.
2. Revise those habits. After remembering and revisiting your old school day habits, get rid of what didn’t work, highlight what did, and talk about what may work better. Revise them as a team, allowing your child(ren) to be involved in the process.
3. Reward those habits. Habits form in varying timeframes, but incentives and rewards can help them form faster. Tokens to be collected for a larger reward, such as choosing from a prize bin, staying up a few minutes later, extra screen time, etc., are just a few of the many incentives you can offer. You can even ask your child(ren) what rewards they would like to make it even more enticing.
4. Remind your children they are responsible for the habit. Letting your child feel responsible and accountable helps a habit to stick, just like rewards. For example, create a chart of their nighttime routine and allow them to check it off every evening. You could also create cards of their nightly tasks and let them choose the order they’d like to complete them by placing the cards in that order.
5. Let your child(ren) choose a new habit. A new year can’t be without a resolution! Discuss New Year’s resolutions with your child(ren), and ask them what they want to do in the new year. Let them decide their resolution, and help them make a plan to achieve it.